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Tony Merida to dedicate full attention to pastorate

BY AMY WHITFIELD   06/05/2017

On Sunday, June 4, Tony Merida announced that he would be stepping away from his faculty role at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (SEBTS), effective December 2017.


Merida is currently the associate professor of preaching and the Johnny Hunt chair of biblical preaching.

He also serves as the founding pastor of Imago Dei Church (IDC) in Raleigh, North Carolina, which was planted in 2011. Due to the church’s tremendous growth over six years and the corresponding increase in responsibilities, Merida will be turning his full-time attention to the pastorate. He will continue to serve as a visiting professor.

Daniel Akin, president of Southeastern, describes Merida’s transition as completely understandable but bittersweet. “Dr. Merida is a dear and valued friend to me personally, and he will be missed as a full-time member of our faculty. However, I cannot help but rejoice in the work that Imago Dei Church is doing for the gospel in our region and beyond. I also am thankful that Tony will continue to have a teaching role and relationship with Southeastern,” Akin said.

Bruce Ashford, provost of Southeastern, said, “I am grateful for Dr. Merida’s contribution in the classroom as a teacher and preacher, and am likewise grateful to see him give those gifts in service to the local church.”

Merida is known on the SEBTS campus as a beloved professor, and in 2014 received the “Faculty Excellence and Teaching Award.” That same year, he shared what he hoped his students walked away with at the end of each semester.

“We can say good things, but people need God’s word, and we need to expound the Bible and exalt Jesus in our preaching,” he said. “I hope my students leave understanding that.”


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